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Can a 'bacon making regular' look over what I'm doing

 
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Aydee



Joined: 29 Oct 2014
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Wed Oct 29 14 6:54 pm    Post subject: Can a 'bacon making regular' look over what I'm doing Reply with quote

Newbie to this. But I've wanted to make my own bacon for ages.

Ultimately, I would like a little reassurance I'm going the right way, and any SIMPLE (And $0 cost) suggestions. (No money. Single income. Mortgage. 5 yr old child. Money is NOT a luxury)

I'm starting simple.
I've got about 4kg (Approx 9lb) of pork belly. Due to the size of my smoker, I've cut it into 4 even chunks (Approx 2.2lb each)

I've bought this: http://www.melbournefooddepot.com/buy/pink-salt-cure-1-powder-100g/PS0012

(Bloody hard to get Cure#1 powder where I am. Any butcher that makes their own bacon won't sell you it! I'm not joking. It's very jealous around here. City of 400k people or so.)

I'm using the following recipe:
22.5gm Salt
8gm Sugar
2.5gm Cure #1


To put into as close to "Universal measurements" I can.
4.5 teaspoons of salt
1.5 teaspoons of sugar (little over)
0.5 teaspoons of cure#1
2.2lb of pork belly

I'm actually going to do a batch. Mix it up a bit more to even it out I will do closer to 4x that much (Just to take into account errors in my scale which no doubt exist)

My method:
Mix the above ingredients (well. Not the pork...) thoroughly.
As it's a 4x batch, measure out 1/4 of it.
Take that measured off portion and rub into pork with approx 70 - 80% on the 'meat side'.
Put in double zip-locked freezer bag. Massage a bit more for good measure.
Put in fridge.
Turn daily.
10 days.
Remove meat.
Wash. Wash some more. And then wash a little more. (I'm thinking thorough wash both sides. Then put in a bucket of clean water. Soak half hour. Drain and give a rinse)
Pat dry with paper towel.
Dry on wire rack for about 1/2 hr - 1hr. (Until dry)

Now comes the bit I need suggestions on:
The smoking.

I don't have a big smoker. I can't afford a big smoker. I'm using what I use to smoke chickens (hot smoke). It's effectively a 10G barrel cut in half (lengthwise) and a grill at the mid point (along the hinge if that makes sense). Air intakes bottom both sides, and top both sides. All adjustable.

Normally the smoker fits EXACTLY one chicken. I then put a small pile of charcoal get it lit and let it go out and 'smoulder'. I then add fistfuls of smoking chips to this. Every half hour another fistful goes on. 6 - 8 hrs = 1 hot smoked chicken.

For Bacon, I'm thinking I might go a little different. Smoke is easy. But I'm going to go a smaller pile of charcoal. I'm talking about 2" by 1" by 1" of charcoal. Get lit and then down to glowing coal. then fistful by fistful of smoking wood til it's good.

This tends to get VERY good smoke. We're talking smoke jetting out everywhere.

I'm also planning on putting a k-type probe through a vent to monitor (I'm an electronic nerd. I have a multimeter with a calibrated temperature sensor.. Razz)

What temp am I looking for (And please mention whether F or C. In Australia we use Celcius)

Thanks in advance mates.

Dave
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qfanatic01
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Joined: 21 Oct 2009
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Location: Champlin, MN

PostPosted: Fri Nov 07 14 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do a hot smoked bacon. Very easy.

1 skinless belly 10-14 lbs

dry cure:
1 cup of brown cane sugar
1 cup of rub (mine is 50% kosher salt)
2 tsp pink salt

cut belly to 4 or 6 pieces that will fit flat in 1 gallon freezer storage bags making sure each piece is all coated in your cure (divide cure to give equal amounts to each bag), then refrigerate fat side up for 10 days, 7 days for the smallest one if your desperate. javascript:emoticon('Laughing') You can flip every other day, but I have seen no difference as long as it is sitting in the juices. After 10 days, with the bag still sealed rub both sides of the belly to make sure the cure is dissolved in the juices, then remove the belly. Do not rinse, just place in the smoker fat side up on grates. Smoke at 225 F to 180 F. Cool in refrigerator over night. Next day slice 1/4 inch thick and grill for a couple of minutes to warm. I like it best after it has been in the fridge for a couple of days unwrapped. It gets a country ham texture as some of the moisture evaporates. I actually don't wrap mine, but it's usually gone in less than a week.

Variations:

substitute maple sugar or dried honey in the cure

sprinkle with coarse ground pepper before smoking

enjoy.
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Rinngrizz
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Joined: 13 Mar 2012
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 30 14 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

for ease, lets say each chunk of belly is 2.2lbs. So the measurments I've always used were posted here by mr "Harry Nutczak". I guess some (including myself) would call him a bacon guru with lots of knowledge that he is willing to share about bacon and its production.

Per 5lbs of belly:

1tsp of cure #1
1TBS of Kosher salt
1.5tsp granulated sugar (white sugar)

Easiest way would be to see how many grams each weighs then do the simple math conversion (dont know their weights off the top of my head)

Cure for 5-7 days. If I remember right, most will allow for 1/4 in of penatration of cure/24 hrs. you can flip daily or every other day. or cure for the whole 10 days while flipping daily like you planned. no big deal.

after curing, I just place mine in a large bowl and let water run through the bowl a couple of hours on a slow trickle. then rinse, and let run again another couple of hours. pull it out, dry off with paper towels, and let sit in the fridge overnight uncovered to form the pellicle.

for smoke, maybe think a metal (non galvanized) coffee can as your charcoal vessel. get 2-3 coals going and ashed, then add chips. when those coals lose their heat, have a few more ready to dump in with some more chips. If you wanted to do all 4 pieces of belly together, stand them on end and run a skewer through them to link all of them together. make sure to leave a space of approx 1-1.5 in between them to allow smoke to hit it. I smoke my bacon for approx 6-8hrs and the temp of the smoker never gets above 100F. This is called "cold smoking"

Hope this helps answer your questions. Cheers!
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Harry Nutczak
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03 14 4:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i've revamped my formula for each pound of meat to;

Cure #1 1.4 grams
Salt 0.75 TBS
Sugar 0.75 TBS
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SoEzzy
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 03 14 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Harry Nutczak wrote:
i've revamped my formula for each pound of meat to;

Cure #1 1.4 grams
Salt 0.75 TBS
Sugar 0.75 TBS


Or per 4lbs of meat.

Cure #1 5.6 grams
Salt 3 TBS
Sugar 3 TBS

As it's often easier to think of whole numbers whenever possible!
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Rinngrizz
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05 14 1:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That should surely cut down on the amount of time spent measuring and weighing. thanks gentlemen.
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Harry Nutczak
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05 14 4:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rinngrizz wrote:
That should surely cut down on the amount of time spent measuring and weighing. thanks gentlemen.


I purchased an inexpensive electronic scale sold under the "Hornady" brand name for loading ammunition.

It measures in Grains, Grams, & carats.
I was not too pleased with it for loading ammo, so it got repurposed into the kitchen and is my cure measuring system of choice now.

Been using it for years and it hasn't even need a battery replacement yet
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Rinngrizz
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05 14 6:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Harry Nutczak wrote:
Rinngrizz wrote:
That should surely cut down on the amount of time spent measuring and weighing. thanks gentlemen.


I purchased an inexpensive electronic scale sold under the "Hornady" brand name for loading ammunition.

It measures in Grains, Grams, & carats.
I was not too pleased with it for loading ammo, so it got repurposed into the kitchen and is my cure measuring system of choice now.

Been using it for years and it hasn't even need a battery replacement yet


you bet. My scale has been one of the best purchases I've ever made for the kitchen. An absolute must for me when doing bacon and other cured meats.
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